|DOLLS (director: Stuart Gordon; screenwriter: Ed Naha; cinematographer: Mac Ahlberg ; editor: Lee Percy; music: Fuzzbee Morse; cast: Carrie Lorraine ( Judy Bower), Guy Rolfe (Gabriel Hartwicke), Hilary Mason (Hilary Hartwicke), Ian Patrick Williams (David Bower), Carolyn Purdy-Gordon (Rosemary Bower), Cassie Stuart (Enid), Bunty Bailey (Isabel), Stephen Lee (Ralph); Runtime: 77; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Brian Yuzna ; Empire Pictures; 1987)|
by Dennis Schwartz
director Stuart Gordon ("Stuck"/"Edmond"/"King
of the Ants") directs his follow-up to Re-Animator
(1985), which fails to capture that film's
imagination. Horror screenwriter Ed Naha hands in a
perfuntorary script. The attempt at a splatter horror
film presented as a morality play, like the fairy-tale Brothers
Grimm, was rather tedious.
innocent Judy (Carrie Lorraine) is a sad
seven-year-old girl traveling through England during
the summer with her abusive father (Ian Patrick Williams)
and her new detested bitchy stepmother (Carolyn Purdy-Gordon).
Their car gets stuck in the mud during a storm at
night, on a country road, when they try avoiding
another car. Therefore they seek shelter in a nearby
gloomy old mansion. Gabriel
Hartwicke (Guy Rolfe) is
the genial elderly house owner, who is a doll-maker.
His similarly eccentric wife is Hilary (Hilary Mason),
who gladly makes her guests feel welcome. Also seeking
shelter are the nice guy driver (Stephen
Lee) of the other car stuck on the road
and his two trampy hitch-hikers (Cassie Stuart & Bunty Bail).
doll maker befriends Judy and gives her a tour of his
the night the dolls sense the two hitchhikers are
planning to rob the house and the little dolls turn
malevolent, doing a gory number on them.
The only thing chilling is the concept that the little dolls could display rage and violence like humans.
REVIEWED ON 4/15/2016 GRADE: C+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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